One of my biggest fears with riding my bike is being stranded in the middle of nowhere with dive-bombing Red Winged Black birds. Like, seriously, not jokingly, terrified of those f’ing birds.
On Sunday I lived that nightmare when my chain slipped. When I stopped to get off of my bike I noticed three of those birds hanging out on a telephone line on the other side of the road. I remained calm for all of 20 seconds. I was shaking with terror afraid that the birds would start attacking me, I couldn’t grip my chain to put back into place. As I was fumbling with the chain the chirps from those birds became amplified by 10,000 more decibels, I swear.
I called John, just hearing a human voice calmed me. The birds never came near me. I got my chain back on, but had to turn around and head back to my car because I was with a 100k charity ride & didn’t know the course.
After that failure, I headed to Verona to do an Ironman loop. John came with because he knew how much the bird situation shook me, and, he’s just a damn nice guy. Not even 3 miles into the ride, my chain slipped again. Goddammit. Put it back on, ride a few miles, chain slips again. In total, the chain slipped four times. To add to the chain slip frustration, the wind was blowing at an unforgiving 18 mph, and then it started to rain.
Long distance training on the bike has so far been the most frustrating and difficult thing I’ve ever trained for, yet I week after week I keep going back out there to get my ass handed to me. Why?